The Honourable Julie Bishop
The Hon. Julie Bishop served as Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs from 2013 until her resignation in 2018. She was the first female to hold the role as well as the first female Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party, serving for 11 years. She was the longest serving Member for Curtin in the House of Representatives, elected in 1998 until 2019.
As Foreign Minister, Ms Bishop was responsible for strengthening Australia’s key strategic and economic relationships and enhancing engagement with Pacific Island countries, including normalising relations with Fiji, leading international recovery and reconstruction efforts in Vanuatu and establishing a school of government in Papua New Guinea. With Ministerial responsibility for more than 5,000 departmental staff as well as government agencies Australian Secret Intelligence Service and Australian Centre for International Agriculture Research.
She led the single largest expansion of Australia's overseas diplomatic presence in 40 years, increasing to 110 diplomatic missions. Ms Bishop developed the 2017 Foreign Policy White Paper, providing a comprehensive policy framework for the next decade; and established the New Colombo Plan, enabling Australian undergraduates to live, study and work in the Indo-Pacific region. Within five years more than 40,000 students have participated in the Plan.
Bringing her experience from the private sector, Ms Bishop established the innovationXchange within DFAT to develop bold and creative solutions to longstanding, overseas development assistance challenges, and overhauled Australia’s foreign aid focus.
Julie is the Chancellor of Australian National University, chair of Telethon Kid’s Institute, chair of The Prince’s Trust Australia, member of the international advisory boards of Afiniti, Greensill Capital and the Human Vaccines Project and is the Patron of Shooting Stars – an education programme for young aboriginal girls. She has also established a boutique advisory firm, Julie Bishop and Partners.